Liu Hua Attends 2013 China Yangzhou World Canal Cities Expo
26-27 September 2013 – Ms. Liu Hua, Deputy Director General of the UNA-China attended the 2013 China Yangzhou World Canal Cities Expo held in Yangzhou City. Ms. Liu addressed the forum on the topic ‘Water Resources and Sustainable Cities from UN Perspective’. Ms. Liu also briefed local officials and attendees abroad on the work of the UNA-China and exchanged views with them.
In her speech, Liu said, the global water resources and sustainable cities were facing severe challenges. Nearly 60% of the world's people would be urban dwellers within two decades, and cities could not be sustainable without ensuring reliable access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation. Sustainable, efficient and equitable management of water in cities have never been as important as in today's world.
Liu said that water resources and sustainable cities were integral part of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and according to the latest progress report of the UN, the international community had made progress in improved drinking-water sources. However, redoubled efforts were needed to improve the sanitation and lives of the growing numbers of urban poor. The Final Report on the National Consultation Process on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, jointly done by the UNA-China and the UNDP China last May, also made similar suggestions on the safety of drinking water, including protecting water resources, water resources management and drinking water safety.
With the Post-2015 Development Agenda in the making, Liu urged, China should support and participate in relevant international cooperation and negotiations, learning and sharing best practices & information. And more importantly, a holistic approach is a must, with emphasis on transforming the economies for jobs and inclusive growth. Participation of all multistakers from all walks of life should be encouraged with the aim to build peace and effective, open and accountable institutions for all.
Liu spoke highly of the Expo in an interview while suggesting that Yangzhou could learn more about the ideas and visions of the UN on water resources management and sustainable cities, strengthen exchanges with foreign cities, like Venice, sharing practices in dealing with urban-related issues. Liu also expressed willingness to promote Yangzhou’s contact with the UN system with the aim to building a more ecological and civilized city.
The China Yangzhou World Canal Cities Expo has been held for 6 years since 2007. The theme of this year is “water ecology, water civilization and renowned cities”. More than 400 representatives and experts from 5 international organizations, 16 abroad canal cities and 35 cities along the Grand Canal of China gathered at the event.